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Full text of "The History Of Western Education"

HISTORY OF WESTERN EDUCATION

rector of the new gymnasium at Nuremberg, wrote very little with
direct reference to education.    But the school addresses he
delivered at Nuremberg, read in conjunction with occasional
passages  in  his  writings,   give  indications  of  an  educational
philosophy as wise and as profound as his wonderful philosophical
system.   " Pedagogy," he says, " is the art of making man moral.
It regards man as one with nature, and points out the way in which
he may be born again, and have his first nature changed into a
second spiritual nature, in such fashion that the spiritual nature
may become habitual to him."*    The child begins life in the
bondage of nature, a creature of sense rather than a thinking
being,   Yet potentially he has inherent in him the freedom that
is the essential mark or man as a spiritual being, and gradually
his powers are awakened by the instruction he receives in home
and school, and he becomes ready for the new birth of the spirit.
But before he can pass out of nature into spirit there needs to be
a definite breach with the natural interests in the years of
adolescence.   He must suffer the pangs of self-estrangement, and
realize the total inadequacy of all experience that is merely
individual.   He must reach out after the universal in the life of
imagination and thought.   Here the school can be of great service
to him, especially if it acquaints him with the literature of the
ancient world.    The Greek city State succeeded in bringing
individual will into harmony with universal purpose for a brief
glorious moment;   and in his study of its genius the youth is
withdrawn from the narrow particularity of his own life and given
a glimpse of the complete many-sided life on which culture and
morals must rest.   But even this is only a stage on the way to
manhood.   Obedience to authority, reverence for the spiritual
accomplishments of the past, self-renunciation, though necessary
as a phase, lead on—or should lead on, if the personal development
is not arrested prematurely—to the discovery of the new spiritual
self that realizes its freedom through adult participation in the
spirit of the nation.   This pilgrim's progress that re-makes the
natural individuality into a spiritual, and culminates in a citizen-
ship which involves community with the Absolute and Eternal
embodied in the nation, is all through a social process.   That
.which is explicit in the common life is implicit in each individual
life;  and the individual rises to the perfection of his own life
* Quoted, Mackenzie, Hegel's Educational Theory and Practice, p. 63.